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Government notifies draft rules under the Code on Social Security

Government notifies draft rules under the Code on Social Security

NEW DELHI: In a move aimed at enabling unorganised workers, gig workers and platform workers to avail social security benefits under the Social Security Code, the labour ministry has provided for their self registration on the government portal.

The provisions are part of the draft rules framed by the labour ministry under the Code on Social Security, 2020. The draft rules provide for operationalization of provisions in the Code on Social Security, 2020 relating to Employees’ Provident Fund, Employees’ State Insurance Corporation, Gratuity, Maternity Benefit, Social Security and Cess in respect of Building and Other Construction Workers, Social Security for Unorganised Workers, Gig Workers and Platform Workers.

The labour ministry has sought suggestions on the draft rules over the next 45 days from the date of notification of the draft rules following which the final rules will be notified. The ministry has already unveiled draft rules under the Industrial Relations Code while it hopes to put the draft rules under the Code on Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions shortly. The aim is to roll-out the four codes from April 1, 2021.

“The draft rules provide for Aadhaar based registration including self-registration by unorganised workers, gig workers and platform workers on the portal of the central government,” it said in a statement.

According to the labour ministry, the rules also provide for the manner of payment of contribution by the aggregators through self-assessment.

“Provision has also been made in the rules regarding gratuity to an employee who is on fixed term employment,” it said, adding there is a provision for single electronic registration of an establishment including cancellation of the registration in case of closure of business activities.

Besides, provision has also been made regarding manners and conditions for exiting an establishment from EPFO and ESIC coverage.

The procedure for self-assessment and payment of cess in respect of building and other construction workers has been elaborated in the rules. “For the purpose of self- assessment, the employer shall calculate the cost of construction as per the rates specified by the state public works department or central public works department or on the basis of return or documents submitted to the Real Estate Regulatory Authority.,” it added.

The rate of Interest for delayed payment of such cess has been reduced from 2% every month or part of a month to 1%. Under the existing rules, the assessing officer has the power to direct that no material or machinery can be removed or disturbed from the construction site.

“Such power for indefinitely stopping construction work has been withdrawn in the draft rules,” it said, adding the assessing officer can visit the construction site only with the prior approval of the secretary of the Building and Other Construction Workers Board.

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